Being a solar consultant, meeting new people everyday and explaining about advantages of renewable energy is my day to day work. Usually things are very simple, analysing electricity consumption, suggesting a system size according to requirement and then a quick feasibility visit on rooftop to check what size we can accommodate.
Sometimes it gets tough to explain to few bank interest savy people who always compare initial investment in solar with return on amount from bank interests. I don't understand why they do this, actually, no one does that with shopping of premium brand apparels, luxury cars or whatever they do with their money on things which give no monetary return but at least 60-70% prospects ( at least in my case, trust me I have met more than 1000s of people in more than 5 Indian cities) do compare their investment in solar pv plant with bank interests. Okay, let them do that and move forward.
Coming back to the heading, it's a very small but inspiring story of three home owners residing in Sector 33, Chandigarh. One of them Mr. H. Singh (intentionally not disclosing full name), retired and in his late 80s, living with his wife. Very minimal electricity consumption but still considering the fact that clean energy is the key to sustainability and a message to his upcoming generation that solar energy can fulfil all their power needs. He gave us (BigWit Energy) a go ahead to install a 3kW solar plant on his rooftop in Aug. 2019. The completion of work took almost 60-80 days considering all paperwork (there was some delay due to change in policy from MNRE) and Net Metering.
We kept our operations and maintenance services as it is till date. The interaction with Mr. H Singh was very limited since he is very old and can't talk much on phone or WhatsApp. One of true gentlemen, very jolly person to be with in all aspects. He hardly made any follow up call for anything and I had a very limited interaction in person after installation was done since I am mostly on field.
Last month (Oct. 2020) I got a call from his neighbour that Mr H. Singh wants to talk to me regarding his electricity bill. So, I asked him to share a picture of recent bill on WhatsApp.
So he shared this..
After looking at it, my first response was, Sir, this bill is just fine. Your energy charges are absolutely zero. The only charges you have are fixed charges which are clubbed with ACD charges (that's something related to peak load). Infact, you have accumulated are 950 units (probably because weather was so awesome during lockdown) for your future consumption. Initially, it took some for him to understand that how it works since for him an electricity bill is just an electricity bill. For better understanding I shared this on WhatsApp ( to limit the site visits due to COVID19 fear and also considering he is 86 year old)..
Now this was pretty clear to him, then I asked, Sir, it's been more than one year now why is it that you are asking me this after this long. He said, because this is the first time I am paying any bill above 240 rupees( fixed charges) since you guys installed solar on my rooftop.
I was surprised and very happy to see the change in monthly calculation of an 86 year old man, who started calculating his monthly expense after deducting electricity bill (which usually is a kind of fixed expense for every household). This change is substantial and is giving around 25% annual return on his investment on solar plant.
But still calculating bank interest of 6-7% is fun...keep going!